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Sean Cowen
Tesla Gigafactory
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World War II Monument Opens In Washington, D.C. ON 29 April, 2004

On April 29, 2004, the National World War II Memorial opens in Washington, D.C., to thousands of visitors, providing overdue recognition for the 16 million U.S. men and women who served in the war. The memorial is located on 7.4 acres on the former site of the Rainbow Pool at the National Mall between the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial. The Capitol dome is seen to the east, and Arlington Cemetery is just across the Potomac River to the west.

The granite and bronze monument features fountains between arches symbolizing hostilities in Europe and the Far East. The arches are flanked by semicircles of pillars, one each for the states, territories and the District of Columbia. Beyond the pool is a curved wall of 4,000 gold stars, one for every 100 Americans killed in the war.An Announcement Stone proclaims that the memorial honors those “Americans who took up the struggle during the Second World War and made the sacrifices to perpetuate the gift our forefathers entrusted to us: A nation conceived in liberty and justice.”

Though the federal government donated $16 million to the memorial fund, it took more than $164 million in private donations to get it built. Former Kansas Sen. Bob Dole, who was severely wounded in the war, and actor Tom Hanks were among its most vocal supporters. Only a fraction of the 16 million Americans who served in the war would ever see it. Four million World War II veterans were living at the time, with more than 1,100 dying every day, according to government records.

The memorial was inspired by Roger Durbin of Berkey, Ohio, who served under Gen. George S. Patton. At a fish fry near Toledo in February 1987, he asked U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur why there was no memorial on the Mall to honor World War II veterans. Kaptur, a Democrat from Ohio, soon introduced legislation to build one, starting a process that would stumble alongthrough 17 years of legislative, legal and artistic entanglements. Durbin died of pancreatic cancer in 2000.

The monument was formally dedicated May 29, 2004, by U.S. President George W. Bush. Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it received some 4.4 million visitors in 2005.

#wwii #worldwar2 #washington #monument #war #soldiers

The National World War II Memorial: The Meaning of the Memorial


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I was addicted to models as a kid. Cars, battleships, and cool spaceships. Yes, I was THAT kid, lol. Thanks for the memories, +Luca Oleastri​​!

#models #revell #childhood #spaceship #cars #baattleships #model kits 
XSL-01 Manned Space Ship - plastic model kit by Revell, 1957
#modelkits #vintage #retrofuture #spaceship

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Iconic Book Covers

What are some of the most ICONIC book covers that have stayed in your memory? My problem is that there are hundreds. I'm very visual, so the artwork remains, swirling around inside my brain. But when you see great artwork, it does stay with you. Sometimes for years, sometimes forever. Like this artwork...

#booklovers #bookporn #bookjacket #bookcovers #books #bookartwork

via/ Flavorwire

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Spider Bug

It just goes to show that things do not necessarily have to end up as they started. Supposedly, Spider Bug is located in the Carson City, Nevada area. Creepily cool!

#spiderbug #vw #bug #nevada #carsoncity #art #foundart #upcycling

via/ WebUrbanist

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Kurt Cobain

Anyone who lived through the "grunge" sound of the 90s knows how influential Nirvana was (along with many other Sub Pop bands). There are seminal artists and bands from all eras, and Kurt will always be one of those artists, misanthropic as he was...

On April 8, 1994, rock star Kurt Cobain was found dead in his home outside Seattle, Washington, with fresh injection marks in both arms and a fatal wound to the head from the 20-gauge shotgun found between his knees. Cobain’s suicide brought an end to a life marked by far more suffering than is generally associated with rock superstardom. But rock superstardom never did sit well with Kurt Cobain, a committed social outsider who was reluctantly dubbed the spokesman of his generation. “Success to him seemed like, I think, a brick wall,” said friend Greg Sage, a musical hero of Cobain’s from the local punk rock scene of the 1980s. “There was nowhere else to go but down.”

Kurt Cobain rose to fame as the leader and chief songwriter of the Seattle-based band Nirvana, the group primarily responsible for turning a thriving regional music scene in the Pacific Northwest into a worldwide pop-cultural phenomenon often labeled “grunge.” As enormously popular as Nirvana became in the wake of their era-defining single “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (1991), it’s easy to forget just how far outside the mainstream the band really was, and just how ill-suited to pop celebrity the misanthropic, heroin-addicted Kurt Cobain was. In his suicide note, Cobain wrote: “I have it good, very good, and I’m grateful, but since the age of seven, I’ve become hateful towards all humans in general….Thank you all from the pit of my burning, nauseous stomach for your letters and concern during the past years. I’m too much of an erratic, moody baby! I don’t have the passion anymore, and so remember, it’s better to burn out than to fade away.”

Cobain’s suicide note was found stabbed to a pile of potting soil with a ballpoint pen, nearby his body in the greenhouse on his Lake Washington property. It was probably written on or about April 5, 1994—the estimated date on which Cobain actually shot himself and one day after Cobain’s rock-star wife, Courtney Love, filed a Missing Person Report stating that Cobain was possibly suicidal and in possession of a gun. It was not the Seattle police, however, but a workman inspecting lighting on Cobain’s property who first discovered Cobain’s body on this day in 1994.

#kurtcobain #nirvana #grunge #grungemusic #seattle #musiclovers #subpoprecords #music #rocknrollhistory #rip



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50 South Virginia

Revived. Re-purposed. Re-imagined.

This is the old post office in Reno. It's now a cool re-imagined place with unique subterranean shops, and a ground floor branch of West Elm (started in the DUMBO area of Brooklyn).

It has a great feel that reminded me of Old Sacramento and Seattle a bit (along with tines of some of the great subterranean joints in Prague). With a great industrial feel, it's retained those cool Art Deco and Moderne lines. Definitely worth seeing if you visit Reno, as it's in the heart of the downtown.


In February 1928, President Coolidge signed a bill appropriating $100 million for construction of new post offices across the country, including $450,000 for a new Reno post office and federal building. The postal service considered several sites, eventually purchasing the site south of the Truckee River between Virginia and Center streets. During this period, the Treasury Department’s Office of the Supervising Architect designed most post offices. This building was unique because the Postal Department hired a local architect and because that architect convinced them to approve plans for what would become Nevada’s only Art Deco post office.

Nevada’s Only State Architect

The Postal Department hired Frederic J. DeLongchamps, one of Nevada’s most prolific architects. DeLongchamps was born here in Reno, learning the building trades from his father, a carpenter, and studying mining at the University of Nevada, Reno.

After traveling to San Francisco to aid in the post-earthquake rebuilding, DeLongchamps returned to Nevada and began working as an architect. Despite no formal training (legend says he may or may not have apprenticed under an architect in S.F.), DeLongchamps spent two years on small projects before bidding to design the Washoe County Courthouse, which he won.

DeLongchamps ultimately designed nine county courthouses including two in California, major additions to the Nevada State Capitol, mansions for the Mapes family and George Whittell, and over five hundred other buildings. DeLongchamps won awards for his buildings at the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Expositions in San Francisco and San Diego. DeLongchamps served as Nevada’s first state architect from 1919 until the position was eliminated in 1921. When Nevada governor James Scrugham reinstated the position in 1923, he appointed DeLongchamps to the position again.

A Marvel of Nevada Architecture

The McDonald Engineering Company commenced the building of DeLongchamps’s design in late 1932. Schools closed early and many businesses closed their offices for an hour on November 15 for the groundbreaking ceremony. The University of Nevada band played and Senator Tasker Oddie and local dignitaries spoke while Reno radio station KOH broadcasted the ceremony.

Completed in 1934, the building has been deemed “an outstanding example of a combined post office and federal office building for a medium-sized city.” And, according to its 1990 NRHP nomination, it is the sole post office built by the U.S. government in all of Nevada that has Art Deco/Moderne styling. DeLongchamps is also the only known Nevada architect to make extensive use of terra cotta as a building material, using it as the outer layer and incising it to resemble quarried stone. Inside features include walls paneled in black Georgia marble and casted aluminum detailings.

#nevada #architecture #history #design #artdeco #moderne #reimagined

10 Photos - View album

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Saw this a few nights ago and I'm still not sure what to think of it. The visuals were stunning, amazing, and any one of a hundred other superlatives. But I suppose a story with a true heart was missing in this film, at least imho. I wanted so much more of this film...

Passengers is a 2016 American science fiction adventure film directed by Morten Tyldum and written by Jon Spaihts. It stars Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Pratt, Michael Sheen, Laurence Fishburne and Andy García. The film tells about two people who wake up 90 years too soon from an induced hibernation on board a spaceship bound for a new planet.

The film was released in the United States on December 21, 2016 in 2D and RealD 3D by Columbia Pictures. It has grossed $294 million worldwide. The film was nominated for Best Original Score and Best Production Design at the 89th Academy Awards.

Plot (Spoilers)

The starship Avalon is transporting over 5,000 colonists and crew in hibernation pods to the planet Homestead II, a journey that takes 120 years. Thirty years into its journey, the ship encounters an asteroid belt, in which it collides with a large asteroid. As a result of the collision, the ship's protective energy shield is weakened enough to allow a piece of it to pass through the shield, impacting the ship. This causes a malfunction that awakens one passenger, mechanical engineer Jim Preston (Chris Pratt), 90 years too early.

After a year of isolation, with no company except Arthur (Michael Sheen), an android bartender, Jim contemplates suicide. One day he notices beautiful Aurora Lane (Jennifer Lawrence) in her pod. Her video profile reveals she is a writer with a humorous personality. After struggling with the morality of manually reviving Aurora for companionship, he awakens her, claiming her pod malfunctioned like his. The only one knowing about what Jim did, is Arthur. He promises Jim to not tell Aurora about why she really woke up. Aurora, devastated she may grow old and die before the ship reaches Homestead II, attempts a fruitless effort at re-entering hibernation, just as Jim had tried. Eventually, she accepts her situation and begins writing a book about her experiences. Jim and Aurora grow closer, becoming lovers...


#scifi #scifimovies #passengers #chrispratt #jenniferlawrence #hollywood #space

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The Prestige

I always found this a fantastically nuanced film, full of magnificent cinematography and all the deft touches C. Nolan is known for. His movies fascinate me, and this film is worth watching a few times to see what you've missed.

The Prestige is a 2006 mystery thriller drama film directed by Christopher Nolan, from a screenplay adapted by Nolan and his brother Jonathan from Christopher Priest's 1995 World Fantasy Award-winning novel of the same name. The story follows Robert Angier and Alfred Borden, rival stage magicians in London at the end of the 19th century. Obsessed with creating the best stage illusion, they engage in competitive one-upmanship with tragic results.

The American-British co-production features Hugh Jackman as Robert Angier, Christian Bale as Alfred Borden, and David Bowie as Nikola Tesla. It also stars Michael Caine, Scarlett Johansson, Piper Perabo, Andy Serkis, and Rebecca Hall. The film reunites Nolan with actors Bale and Caine from Batman Begins and returning cinematographer Wally Pfister, production designer Nathan Crowley, film score composer David Julyan, and editor Lee Smith.

A co-production between Touchstone Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures, the film was released on October 20, 2006, receiving positive reviews and strong box office results, and received Academy Award nominations for Best Cinematography and Best Art Direction. Along with The Illusionist and Scoop, The Prestige was one of three films in 2006 to explore the world of stage magicians.

Themes are important in this film, and many roads are explored in this film...

Themes (*SPOILERS)

The rivalry between Borden and Angier dominates the film. Obsession, secrecy, and sacrifice fuel the battle, as both magicians contribute their fair share to a deadly duel of one-upmanship, with disastrous results. Angier's obsession with beating Borden costs him a great deal of money and Cutter's friendship, while providing him with a collection of his own suicide victims; Borden's obsession with maintaining the secrecy of his twin leads Sarah to question their relationship, eventually resulting in her suicide when she suspects the truth. Angier and one of the twins both lose Olivia's love because of their inhumanity.

Finally, Borden is hanged and the last copy of Angier shot. Their struggle is also expressed through class warfare: Borden as The Professor, a working-class magician who gets his hands dirty, versus Angier as The Great Danton, a classy, elitist showman whose accent makes him appear American. Film critic Matt Brunson claimed that a complex theme of duality is exemplified by Angier and Borden, that the film chooses not to depict either magician as good or evil.

Angier's theft of Borden's teleportation illusion in the film echoes many real-world examples of stolen tricks among magicians. Outside the film, similar rivalries include magicians John Nevil Maskelyne and Harry Kellar's dispute over a levitation illusion. Gary Westfahl of Locus Online also notes a "new proclivity for mayhem" in the film over the novel, citing the murder/suicide disposition of Angier's duplicates and intensified violent acts of revenge and counter-revenge. This "relates to a more general alteration in the events and tone of the film" rather than significantly changing the underlying themes.

Nor is this theme of cutthroat competition limited to prestidigitation: the script incorporates the popular notion that Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison were directly engaged in the War of Currents, a rivalry over electrical standards, which appears in the film in parallel to Borden and Angier's competition for magical supremacy. In the book, Tesla and Edison serve as foils for Borden and Angier, respectively.

Den Shewman of Creative Screenwriting says the film asks how far one would go to devote oneself to an art. The character of Chung Ling Soo, according to Shewman, is a metaphor for this theme. Film critic Alex Manugian refers to this theme as the "meaning of commitment." For example, Soo's pretense of being slow and feeble misdirects his audience from noticing the physical strength required to perform the goldfish bowl trick, but the cost of maintaining this illusion is the sacrifice of individuality: Soo's true appearance and freedom to act naturally are consciously suppressed in his ceaseless dedication to the art of magic.

Nicolas Rapold of Film Comment addresses the points raised by Shewman and Manugian in terms of the film's "refracted take on Romanticism":

Angier's technological solution—which suggests art as sacrifice, a phoenix-like death of the self—and Borden's more meat-and-potatoes form of stagecraft embody the divide between the artist and the social being.

#theprestige #movies #Hollywood #movies #magic #magician #christophernolan


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40 Years Ago: The Rolling Stones Play Famous ‘Love You Live’ Club Shows

It wasn’t a surprise that the Rolling Stones were in Toronto in the winter of 1977. The Royal Mounted Police had alerted the world to the band’s Canadian presence due to one of the biggest drug busts in rock history.

In late February, Stones guitarist Keith Richards was found with an obscene amount of heroin and cocaine in his possession. The incident made international news because Richards was initially charged with trafficking (due to the large amounts) and there was a possibility that the rock star could be headed for a long jail sentence.

The other Stones, who had already been in Toronto practicing, were less than thrilled. Not just for the obvious reasons, but because Richards has potentially blown their cover. Months earlier, frontman Mick Jagger and his manager Peter Rudge had set up a pair of secret Stones shows at the city’s El Mocambo Club with the idea of using some of the live recordings for a forthcoming concert album.

Rudge “asked me, ‘Do you think you can pull it off?’,” promoter Duff Roman recalled to the National Post. “I told him that we could and then started thinking about how we could actually do it without anyone knowing.”

Secrecy was paramount because the upper level at the El Mo (as it’s known) only can contain about 300 people. If the Stones’ cover got blown, the shows would quickly become a media circus – especially with what was going on with Richards. The El Mocambo’s booker, Dave Bluestein, came up with a misdirection. He would schedule Montreal’s April Wine to play March 4 and 5 at the club.

“We had natural cover,” Bluestein said, “because if anything got out, we could say, ‘No, look, April Wine is playing. That’s the gig.’

April Wine was billed along with an unknown band, called the Cockroaches. Of course, in reality, the Canadian rockers were set to open for the biggest band in the world.
In order to ensure that the gigs were attended by friendly crowds, Roman devised a radio contest in which Stones fans could enter to see April Wine. He and Stones members handpicked the winners, who were told of the actual plan while on the bus en route to the gig. The guests entered through the back of the club to cut down on any chance hysteria.
That night, after April Wine’s opening set, the Rolling Stones took the El Mocambo stage, the arena-rocking band’s first club show in 14 years. Richards remembers being thankful for having something positive to do, after all of his legal and media woes.

#rocknroll #rollingstones #rockhistory #loveyoulive #musiclovers

Read More: 40 Years Ago: The Rolling Stones Play Famous 'Love You Live' Club Shows |

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Oh, yes. History was made on this day. Still one of the most requested bands and songs I get each week at +FRIDAY NIGHT SESSIONS​. Dark Side. Dark Side!

#rocknroll #musichistory #pinkfloyd. #darksideofthemoon
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